Episode #23: Monica Piper in Not That Jewish

CLICK HERE to get your Not That Jewish tickets!

Happy Hannukah! Emmy Award-winning comedy writer and comedian Monica Piper (bio below) joins Lisa and Maureen for a very special holiday episode of the JWT Podcast, giving listeners a tantalizing preview of her incredible one woman show, Not That Jewish, now playing at The Braid in Santa Monica after a triumphant run Off Broadway. Ever wonder what it means to have a Jewish heart? Or how about how did Monica go from English teacher to award-winning comedy writer/performer/producer? Have a listen and find out…

Give Monica for Hannukah and share our ticketing link (bit.ly/notthatjewish) with friends and family!

Click here for more info on Not That Jewish

MONICA PIPER was a Campfire Girl … in the Bronx.  “You sense your life isn’t normal when you’re sitting on the D train with a bag of marshmallows and a twig.”

Monica began her career as a high school English teacher. While finding it rewarding, she had to move on. “I couldn’t handle the money and prestige.” Realizing her passion was making people laugh, she studied improv with Second City in Chicago and performed with the Wing and Papaya Juice in San Francisco. She then went solo as a stand-up and soon became one of Showtime Network’s Comedy All Stars. It wasn’t long before she landed her own Cable Ace Award–winning Showtime special, No, Monica, Just You, and was nominated for an American Comedy Award as one of the top five female comedians in the country. Monica was recruited by Ms. Barr herself to write on Roseanne, after which she went on to write for Mad About You and Veronica’s Closet

Monica was now a mother, and sitcom hours meant too much time away from her son, so she turned to animation. After writing for the adult cult favorite Duckman, she became head writer of the #1 children’s animated series Rugrats, for which she won an Emmy. She then developed and wrote series for Nickelodeon, Disney, and Cartoon Network.

Monica returned to her first love, performing. As a stand-up, she headlines fundraising events for organizations including the City of Hope, the Jewish Federation, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, the Brandeis Committee, and the Premiere Oncology Foundation, as well as Jewish groups nationwide. 

Monica also works in the corporate world as a motivational comedian. As a breast cancer survivor, she inspires audiences everywhere to lose the stress and Find the Funny in their personal and professional lives.

An artist-in-residence with Jewish Women’s Theatre, Monica performs original pieces for their At-Homes Salon Theatre Series and is eternally grateful to JWT and Gail Solo for commissioning her critically acclaimed one-woman play, Not That Jewish, which earned an LA Drama Critics Circle nomination for Best Solo Performance of 2015. Monica is thrilled to bring Not That Jewish back to LA after its hit seven-month run off-Broadway.

Monica recently enjoyed playing the role of Bess Myerson in Barra Grant’s Miss America’s Ugly Daughter at the Broad Stage Edye Theater in Santa Monica.

Monica lives in Santa Monica with her dog, cat, and son, Jake, whom she loves and adores “almost every day.”

Episode #23: Monica Piper in Not That Jewish2018-12-05T11:02:12+00:00

Episode #22: Jews in America – Fall Party Preview

CLICK HERE TO BUY YOUR TICKETS TO OUR FALL PARTY

On this episode, Lisa and Maureen are joined by Susan Baskin (see bio below) a writer and frequent contributor to JWT’s salons as well as JWT Artistic Director Ronda Spinak. Ronda and Susan have been working together over the past few months to prepare for JWT’s Fall Party, the annual kickoff to our season of salons. This year’s theme is Jews in America featuring historical documents, original works, music and more from all over the USA’s vibrant timeline. Maureen, Lisa, Susan and Ronda  discuss what inspired this year’s theme, the importance of citizenship and the duality of being a Jew in America, as well as a preview of what’s in store for this year at JWT. Listen and enjoy!

Click here to buy your tickets or find out more info for the Fall Party

JWT Fall Party: Jews in America
October 28th, 2018 at a Home in Brentwood (details to follow ticket purchase)
Doors open at 1:30 PM for shmoozing, dessert buffet, and special surprises
Showtime is at 2:30 PM. 

If you bring someone who has never been to JWT before, you will receive a special thank you gift from us!

 

SUSAN BASKIN (Writer) wrote the Academy Award–winning film Violet and has also written extensively for television and film. Her credits include Remington Steele, Dynasty, and numerous television movies. Her essays have been published in The Los Angeles Times Magazine, West, and Los Angeles Magazine, and she is currently working on a novel.

Episode #22: Jews in America – Fall Party Preview2018-10-10T10:48:02+00:00

Episode #21: Past & Present: Russian Jewish American Stories at the Wende Museum

CLICK HERE TO BUY YOUR TICKETS

On the latest episode of the JWT Podcast Lisa and Maureen sit down with Dr. Joes Segal, Chief Curator of the Wende Museum of the Cold War in Culver City and JWT Artistic Director Ronda Spinak. We are preparing for a very special event at this fascinating museum, a unique reprisal of Past & Present: Russian Jewish American Storiesan incredible show that tells stories of loss and discovery, joy and tears, shame and pride through the eyes of those who have struggled to survive in two very different worlds. Attendees will get a private tour of the museum and see the performance amidst the unique art displays…

Join us on Sunday November 11th, starting at 5pm BUY TICKETS

Episode #21: Past & Present: Russian Jewish American Stories at the Wende Museum2018-10-02T11:16:11+00:00

Episode #20: Chutzpah & Salsa Preview with Sonia Nazario

CLICK HERE TO BUY YOUR TICKETS FOR CHUTZPAH AND SALSA 

On today’s very special episode, we revisit the incredible hit show Chutzpah and Salsa, true stories about what it means to have a Latin heart and a Jewish soul by writers from Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Cuba, Venezuela & Panama. You will laugh, cry and be inspired by this entirely charming show as it is being REPRISED! This coming October 11th, 13th & 14th, made possible in part by a grant from the City of Santa Monica and the Santa Monica Arts Commission.

Click to here to view the trailer for the show

Today you’ll hear “The Value of One” a riveting true story from Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Sonia Nazario (see below for bio), performed by Rachael Hip-Flores. Following the recording is an interview with Sonia. Please join us for the performance on October 14th if you’d like to hear Sonia speak in person as she will join the cast and production team for the Q&A following the performance.

Click here to check out Sonia’s website

SONIA NAZARIO is an award-winning journalist whose stories have tackled some of this country’s most intractable problems — hunger, drug addiction, immigration — and have won some of the most prestigious journalism and book awards, including two Pulitzer Prizes. She was also a finalist for a third Pulitzer, in Public Service.

She is best known for “Enrique’s Journey,” her story of a Honduran boy’s struggle to find his mother in the U.S. Published as a series in the Los Angeles Times, “Enrique’s Journey” won the Pulitzer Prize for feature writing in 2003. It was turned into a book by Random House and became a national bestseller.

Her recent humanitarian efforts to get lawyers for unaccompanied migrant children led to her selection as the 2015 Don and Arvonne Fraser Human Rights Award recipient by the Advocates for Human Rights. She also was named a 2015 Champion of Children by First Focus and a 2015 Golden Door award winner by HIAS Pennsylvania. In 2016, the American Immigration Council gave her the American Heritage Award. Also in 2016, the Houston Peace & Justice Center honored her with their National Peacemaker Award.

Nazario, who grew up in Kansas and in Argentina, has written extensively from Latin America and about Latinos in the United States. She has been named among the most influential Latinos by Hispanic Business Magazine and a “trendsetter” by Hispanic Magazine. In 2012 Columbia Journalism Review named Nazario among “40 women who changed the media business in the past 40.”

She is a graduate of Williams College and has a master’s degree in Latin American studies from the University of California, Berkeley. She has honorary doctorates from Mount St. Mary’s College and Whittier College. She began her career at the Wall Street Journal, and later joined the Los Angeles Times.

She is now at work on her second book and is a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times.

Check out Sonia’s talk on the TED stage: TEDx – Solving Illegal Immigration

Links to recent works:

NYT – Do You Care About the Rule of Law?

LAT – How to Secure the Border

NYT – How the Most Dangerous Place on Earth Got Safer

For more articles or to stay up-to-date on Sonia’s work, follow her Facebook page.

Credits for Chutpah & Salsa:

Adapted, Curated & Produced by Ronda Spinak
Produced by Suzanna Kaplan
Directed by Susan Morgenstern
Dramaturge Lisa Rosenbaum
South Bay Producer Liz Altman
Associate Producers Barbara Koletsky, Susie Yuré, Rose Ziff

Special thanks to Cindy Kendall for performance recording.

In today’s episode you heard:

Opening Remarks
Written by Suzanna Kaplan. Read by Ronda Spinak

Musical Summons of Cast
Violin by Marnina Schon

The Value of One
Written by Sonia Nazario.  Performed by Rachael Hip-Flores.

Click here for more info on Chutzpah & Salsa

Episode #20: Chutzpah & Salsa Preview with Sonia Nazario2018-09-13T15:42:21+00:00

Episode #19: Sacred Resistance Update with Vicki Juditz and Ronda Spinak

Click here to buy your tickets!

On this week’s episode, Andrew sits down with the incredible storyteller Vicki Juditz, creator and star of the now OVATION RECOMMENDED Sacred Resistance, as well as JWT’s Artistic Director Ronda Spinak. They chat about the latest extension of dates for the show (Must close October 7th!) and discuss the amazing, heartwarming and surprising reactions that audiences are having to this show. PLUS a special preview clip from a performance! Have a listen and don’t forget to grab your tickets:

BUY TICKETS HERE

Sacred Resistance Credits:
Written and Performed by Vicki Juditz
Directed by Susan Morgenstern
Produced by Ronda Spinak 
Lighting Designer Ernest McDaniel
Stage Manager  Michelle A. Prudente
Associate Producers Susie Yuré & Rose Ziff
Artistic Associate Daphna Shull

Sacred Resistance was made possible with generous gifts from Annette & Leonard Shapiro and from Gail Solo.

For more info on Sacred Resistance, click here.

Episode #19: Sacred Resistance Update with Vicki Juditz and Ronda Spinak2018-09-11T09:44:19+00:00

Episode #18: Story from a Prison Cell – Leslie Schwartz

FOR TICKETS, CLICK HERE

Prepare for your Days of Awe with a Book Talk by award-winning author Leslie Schwartz. Her powerful new memoir: “The Lost Chapters: Finding Recovery and Renewal One Book at a Time” is one of atonement, transcendence, and of a passionate love of words. Join us for a light brunch, brief performance and discussion with Leslie about her transformational experience after being arrested and sentenced to 90-days in LA County jail…

Sunday August 26th,  10am-noon at The Braid in Santa Monica

TICKETS: $20 before event, $25 at the door

Click here to grab your tickets for this event!

Episode #18: Story from a Prison Cell – Leslie Schwartz2018-08-15T10:05:53+00:00

Episode #17: Uncorked with Corky Hale

JOIN US THIS SUNDAY! If you don’t know Corky Hale’s name, you’ve most certainly heard her music.  Liberace, Sinatra, Streisand…just to name a few. And she’s accompanied many, many more! Corky has been performing as a jazz harpist, pianist, singer, flutist…she’s produced, owned a clothing store, auditioned in the nude…as she says, her life is nuts! And she joins us on stage at the The Braid, this Sunday July 29th to chat about her upcoming biography Corky Hale Uncorked, Music, Marriage and Making a Difference. A light brunch will also be served.

TICKETS: Click here to get your tickets for Sunday

On this episode, Lisa and Maureen sit down with Corky and the book’s co-author Arlene Sarner to discuss some of the aspects and backstory of Corky’s life that will appear in the book. Have a listen and enjoy the stories!

VIDEO: Click here to watch Corky on the Tonight Show with Tony Bennett

Episode #17: Uncorked with Corky Hale2018-07-24T12:56:19+00:00

Episode #16: My Bad, My Good (Abridged)

Opening Song:
I’ll Raise My Voice
Music and Lyrics by Rachel Gold
Performed by Bobby Conte-Thornton, Rachel Gold, Ellie Fishman, and Alex Prakken with pianist Eric Fegan, from the song cycle SONGS FROM FARAWAY PLACES
On today’s episode, we revisit another beloved show from JWT’s past, featuring more honest, revealing and funny confessions from millennials of pivotal moments in life – learning to love, settling the score, figuring out what makes someone Jewish, and other stories in this one-of-a-kind show that will make you rethink your views about a new generation!The pieces featured in this episode are:

A Jewish Pastry
Written by Anna Forward
Performed by Lisa Cirincione and Sean Topps

Father in Me
Written by Paul Versten
Performed by Sean Topps

Motherly Love
Written by Lili Nanus
Performed by Matisse Rose and Arva Rose

The Designated Mourner
Written by Lizzie Shackney
Performed by Mirai Booth-Ong

Closing song:

Throw Out
Music and lyrics by Pontea Banayan
Recorded and Performed by Pontea Banayan

Material Adapted and Produced by Ronda Spinak
Directed by Susan Morgenstern
Assistant Director 
Lisa Cirincione
JWT Producer Jodie Mendelson
House Producers Elana Polan, Josh Hillinger and Sam Mandel

We’d also like to thank NuRoots, The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles and Moishe House for their support and partnership

Click for more info on My Bad, My Good

 

Episode #16: My Bad, My Good (Abridged)2018-07-01T08:54:02+00:00

Episode #15: Guilty Parties (Abridged)

Listen in on the guilt of a new generation!  From the things we should have done to actions we regret.  No one is safe from this moral dilemma as we navigate the expectations of society, family, and relationships.

The pieces featured in this episode are:

CONFESSIONS
Compiled by Vicki Schairer
Performed by the ensemble, Nadége August, Nathan Bock, Chelsea London Lloyd, Rosie Moss and Judy Carter.

I TRIED TO ORDER COFFEE DURING A DATE, BUT HAD A CRISIS ABOUT SYSTEMIC BIAS INSTEAD
Written by Elana Spivak, from the blog McSweeney’s Internet Tendency
Performed by Chelsea London Lloyd, Nathan Bock and Nadege August

THE NUMBER
Written by Barbara Blumenthal Ehrlich
Performed by Nathan Bock and Chelsea London Lloyd

BEWARE
Written, performed and recorded by the Rosannah Sisters
Check out the Rosannah Sisters on Soundcloud

FINDING LOVE BEFORE YOU’RE DEAD
Written and performed by Judy Carter

Guilty Parties is this year’s salon from NEXT @ the Braid, JWT’s emerging artists fellowship. The fellows for 2017-2018 are:

Julie Gumpert
Sarah Resnick
Devan Liljedahl
Vicki Schairer
Andrew Fromer
Daphna Shull
Monique G. Lopez
Lisa Cirincione

For more info, visit NEXT @ The Braid’s page.

JWT Artistic Director Ronda Spinak
Executive Producer of NEXT at the Braid Abbe Meryl Feder
Additional Producing Liz Altman & Carol Kirsh
JWT Producing Director Susan Morgenstern
JWT Managing Director Sharon Landau

Episode #15: Guilty Parties (Abridged)2018-06-27T08:08:26+00:00

Episode #14: Dete Meserve

Click here to grab your tickets!

On this episode, Lisa and Maureen chat with best-selling and award winning author, creator and producer Dete Meserve (see bio below), in anticipation of her upcoming event at JWT. They are also joined by JWT Board Member and Literary Manager Suzanna Kaplan who will be co-moderating the event with Artistic Director Ronda Spinak.  Dete’s new book, “Random Acts of Kindness” includes true and inspiring stories that convey the power of kindness to transform ourselves and others. Have a listen to hear the inside scoop on all of the incredible stories that Dete discovered in creating this book.

EVENT DETAILS
Sunday, June 24th, 10am-12pm at The Braid in Santa Monica. Tickets are $20 and includes a light brunch.

DETE MESERVE is an award-winning author who is searching for Good. Like Kate Bradley in the novels Good Sam and Perfectly Good Crime, Meserve searches for people who are doing extraordinary good for others. While most mysteries focus on finding the killer or kidnapper, Meserve’s novels focus our attention on finding the helpers, the rescuers, and the people who bring light and hope into the world with their selfless acts of kindness. When she’s not writing, she is a film and television producer in Los Angeles and partner of Wind Dancer Films. Meserve lives in Los Angeles with her husband and three children—and a very good cat that rules them all. Fore more info visit Dete’s Website.

SUZANNA KAPLAN was born in Mexico City and grew up speaking English at home and Spanish everywhere else. Following economic uncertainty, she moved to the US where she partnered with her best friend in a translation service and language school. They did well and being young, sold it as soon as they could and used the money to travel, eventually winding up in Israel. That trip stretched out to six years, a husband and a baby. Back in the US, Suzanna worked in Hispanic advertising and wrote for Spanish language TV. Her greatest pleasure these days is writing, producing and working with the wonderful women of JWT when not caring for the two most marvelous creatures known as grandchildren.

Episode #14: Dete Meserve2018-06-11T11:52:23+00:00

Episode #13: Sacred Resistance with Vicki Juditz

OPENING JUNE 21ST! Grab your tickets here!On this episode, Lisa and Maureen are back to chat with Vicki Juditz (see bio below), the writer and star of JWT’s next show, Sacred Resistance. They are also joined by JWT’s Producing Director (as well as the show’s director) Susan Morgenstern (see bio below), who has worked with Vicki to craft this riveting, humorous and poetic performance that compels us to ask the question, “What am I doing to make the world a better place?” Join us to hear how Vicki’s unconventional path to Judaism might be just the thing that inspires audiences to repair the world…

Grab your tickets today!

VICKI JUDITZ Best known in LA for her one-woman show Teshuvah, Return about her journey to Judaism, Vicki has performed her original stories at theaters and festivals across the country, including the National Storytelling Festival and the Aspen LAFF Festival.  Her story Boca aired on KCRW’s UnFictional and Swing Dancing was featured in an episode of The Moth Radio Hour.  On TV, she has played comic roles on Coach, Everybody Loves Raymond, and My Name is Earl. This coming year Vicki will be performing at the Sierra Storytelling Festival in Northern California and with Storytelling Arts of Indiana in Indianapolis.

SUSAN MORGENSTERN began directing in college by staging musical theatre concert readings while co-teaching American Musical Comedy with Tom Lehrer at UC Santa Cruz. She went on to teach and direct at the renowned Stage Door Manor performing arts camp in upstate New York.  In Los Angeles, for Theatre West, Susan has directed selections from David Ives’ All in the Timing; the musicals Just Too Cool, book by Mary Garripoli, music by Phil Orem; and Saturday Night at Grossinger’s, book by Stephen Cole, music by Claibe Richardson; and Barbara Nell Beery’s play, The Socialization of Ruthie Shapiro.  At the Falcon Theatre she directed Leap, by Arnold Margolin, Surviving Sex, by David Landsberg, and the hit comedy, The Psychic, by Sam Bobrick. Susan directed Happy Days, a New Musical, book by Garry Marshall, music/lyrics by Paul Williams, at Cabrillo Music Theatre.  She directed an extended-run production of Meryl Cohn’s comedy Reasons to Live at the Skylight Theatre.  In 2014, Susan began working as a consultant show director at Disneyland Parks and Resorts, Anaheim.  She has directed numerous JWT salon shows, and now happily holds a position as JWT’s Producing Director.

Episode #13: Sacred Resistance with Vicki Juditz2018-06-11T11:45:55+00:00

Episode #12: United Colors of Jews

Yes, Jewish people come in all different colors! Back in January NEXT @ The Braid, our emerging artist fellowship, partnered with Jews of Color to produce a night of stories highlighting Jewish diversity. Attendees were encouraged to bring family photos and introduce the audience to their “multicultural mishpacha” through a great story, and the night did not dissapoint! In this episode, we bring you three of those stories told on stage that night, hosted by the award-winning performer Joshua Silverstein (see bio below). We hear from Emily Bowen Cohen about her Native American heritage, Benny Lumpkins Jr.’s life-changing experiences growing up in Detroit, and Courtenay Edelhart’s generously donated Hannukah shopping spree in Bakersfield. Have a listen and join us for this incredibly eye-opening episode!

JOSHUA REUBEN SILVERSTEIN is an award-winning actor, comic, writer, beatboxer, and educator. His various performances and productions throughout the country have received admiration from such creative geniuses ranging from Norman Lear to Prince.

He is an original member of Norman Lear’s DECLARE YOURSELF ROAD TRIP SHOW, a 3-year spoken-word/musical performance tour encouraging the American people to register to vote.

Beatboxing since the age of 5, Joshua has become the West Coast’s most sought-after beatboxer, named by the Jewish News Service as “one of the best beatboxers in the world.” His various collaborations with artists such as Slash from Guns and Roses, poetic icon Ursula Rucker and Improv legend Wayne Brady have earned him the title of “the hardest-working performer in L.A.”

His solo show, “The Joshua Silverstein Show,” has been receiving rave reviews since its preview at the Greenway Court Theater in Los Angeles in 2014. An early version of the show, titled “Tell Me I’m Pretty” (directed by Diana Wyenn), was presented at the Bootleg Theater in Los Angeles in 2016.  Backed by a three-piece band, Joshua playfully weaves through personal narratives pertaining to race and gender constructs in America. Using devices including pantomime, beatboxing, rapping, and spoken word, Joshua has created a show that continues to inspire, challenge, provoke and motivate. For more info, please visit Joshua’s website.

Episode #12: United Colors of Jews2018-05-23T12:31:13+00:00

Episode #11: Guilty Parties Update with Daphna Shull

Join us in SILVERLAKE tomorrow night! On this episode, Vicki and Andrew chat with fellow member of NEXT at the Braid, Daphna Shull (see bio below) before Monday night’s performance at the Braid in Santa Monica of this year’s NEXT salon, Guilty Parties. They talk about their work together on the council, all the different areas that Daphna contributes to JWT and you’ll get to hear some bonus music written by Daphna that didn’t quite make it into the final show.

DAPHNA SHULL is a two-time NEXT Arts Council Fellow, literary manager, and writer, born and raised in Tampa, Florida. She received her bachelor’s degree in Media Production from Florida State University. After graduating in 2014, she headed west to pursue a career in screenwriting and the arts. Today, Daphna works as a museum educator for the Zimmer Children’s Museum and recently joined the JWT staff.

Episode #11: Guilty Parties Update with Daphna Shull2018-05-15T11:12:57+00:00

Episode #10: Happy Mother’s Day!

On this very special Mother’s Day edition of the JWT podcast, we quickly jump back to 2013 and the performance of Oh, Mother! a smash-hit of ours that was crafted to set the record straight about Jewish mothers, and there was nothing cliche about it! The piece featured in this episode is Evolution Without Me written and performed by Carol Schlanger.

Oh, Mother! was…

Produced by Ronda Spinak
Directed by Ellyn Gersh Lerner
Dramaturge Lisa Rosenbaum

Associate Produced by Susie Yuré and Abby Freeman

Episode #10: Happy Mother’s Day!2018-05-10T14:42:00+00:00

Episode #9: Guilty Parties

GRAB YOUR TICKETS FOR Guilty Parties TODAY!

Vicki Schairer and Andrew Fromer are two young artists making their way through the Los Angeles entertainment industry. They also happen to be original members of JWT’s cutting edge fellowship known as NEXT @ The Braid, a program through which JWT gives voice, support and resources to emerging artists thanks to a very generous grant from the Jewish Community Foundation. Now in its second year, the fellowship culminates in a JWT-signature salon-style show that’ll showcase the writings, artwork and acting of other emerging millennial artists. This year’s show is entitled Guilty Parties and is sure to leave audiences wow-ed as they follow along on a wild ride through the guilt of a new generation.  From the things we should have done to actions we regret.  No one is safe from this moral dilemma as we navigate the expectations of society, family, and relationships.

Click here to get your tickets for Guilty Parties

In today’s episode, Lisa and Maureen sit down with Vicki and Andrew to chat about how NEXT got its start, what the creative process has been like as they work with the JWT leadership and a couple of teasers as to what juicy pieces await in Guilty Parties.

Find out more about NEXT @ The Braid

VICKI SCHAIRER is a director for film and theatre and a television producer. She has directed several short films and is currently in development for a handful of new projects.  She works as a television producer with credits on shows for Amazon Prime, TLC, the History Channel, and Fullscreen. She worked as a theatre director, production manager, and arts administrator in the greater Boston area prior to moving to Los Angeles in 2014. Vicki directed dozens of projects for the Boston stage and collaborated closely with playwrights to develop new work through workshops and readings. She worked in the artistic department of the Huntington Theatre Company and co-founded the collaborative devised theatre ensemble Project: Project, for which she co-wrote and co-directed original plays. She received her undergraduate degree in physics and theatre from Brandeis University and completed the Summer Institute in Film Production at UCLA.

ANDREW FROMER is a Los Angeles native and grew up as an active member in the Jewish community through Stephen S. Wise Temple. He attended Windward School in Mar Vista, where his acting career began in plays and musicals. After completing his BFA in theater at UC Santa Barbara and an exciting year of living in Israel, Andrew took a dive into filmmaking and has since branched into production by helping prepare for distribution two feature films he has acted in: AMP Creative’s Highway to Havasu (dir. Jeff Janke) and Mockingbird Pictures’ The Sweet Life (dir. Rob Spera). Andrew also edits, directs, and hosts his own podcast on the entertainment industry, SideKickBack Radio, which can be found at www.sidekickback.com. He is very excited to be on board for an exciting year with NEXT@theBraid.

Episode #9: Guilty Parties2018-04-26T12:22:39+00:00

Episode #8: Hold Me Heal Me (Abridged)

Today we are going back into Jewish Women’s Theatre’s archive to share stories from Hold Me, Heal Me, a show about the true healing power of kindness. The three stories in this episode illuminate how kindness comforts us even in our most broken moments.The pieces featured in this episode are:

The Shabbos Goy
Written by Joanne Verdino. Performed by Lisa Cirincione and Sean Topps.

A Balm in Beverly Hills
Written by Faye Sholiton. Performed by Kate Zentall and Sean Topps.

O, Engineer
Written by Anna Belle Kaufman. Performed by Kate Zentall.

Hold Me, Heal Me was underwritten by generous donations from Gail Solo, in dedication to Dr. Edith Eger, and Gladys & David Layne

Produced by Ronda Spinak
Assistant Producer: Barbara Koletsky
Directed by Eve Brandstein
Dramaturge Lisa Rosenbaum
Associate Producers: Susie Yure´ and Rose Ziff

For more info on Hold Me, Heal Me visit the show’s page.

Episode #8: Hold Me Heal Me (Abridged)2018-04-26T12:12:38+00:00

Episode #7: Funny Women of JWT

In today’s episode, Lisa and Maureen sit down with Shelly Goldstein and Melanie Chartoff (see below for bios), two incredibly funny women that have written and performed in several of JWT’s shows throughout the years including The Matzo Ball Diaries and Reckoning with Dad. Join us to find out how Shelly and Melanie got their start, what drew them into the world of JWT and how they both work to change the perception of Jewish women in the media.

MELANIE CHARTOFF is an inventor of stories and characters for the page, stage, and screen. As an actress, she’s best known for roles in series such as ABC’s late-night comedy show Fridays, Parker Lewis Can’t Lose, The Newhart Show, Ally McBeal, and Touched by an Angel. She won a Dramalogue Award for the LA premiere of March of the Falsettos and acclaim for her performances in ACT San Francisco’s Sunday in the Park with George, The Vagina Monologues in Chicago, and Beyond Therapy at LA’s Coronet Theater. She can be heard daily somewhere in the world voicing characters such as Didi on Nickleodeon’s long running Rugrats and its spin-offs, movies, and games. She’s written lyrics and book and costars in her upcoming two-character play with music, Fine Lines, and is a columnist for the Huffington Post and the Jewish Journal. She hails from the East Coast stages of Long Wharf Theater, Yale University, and off- and on Broadway (Scapino, Via Galactica, Do I Hear a Waltz). She currently enhances people’s public personae in her Charismatizing Improvising Coaching and Classes. For more information, visit her websites: www.melaniechartoff.com and www.chartoffteaching.com.

Order Chicken Soup for the Soul: My Crazy Family featuring one of Melanie’s stories!

SHELLY GOLDSTEIN has written for every genre of TV, film and stage. Her one-woman shows have played to sell-out crowds throughout the US and UK. She co-starred with Sir Derek Jacobi and Vanessa Redgrave in the British film, The Riddle and with Vinnie Jones in the Irish film, Assault of Darkness. She has written or punched-up sitcoms, dramas, films, lyrics, documentaries, animation, award shows, jokes and special material for such artists as Steve Martin, Barbra Streisand, Sharon Stone, Justin Timberlake, Anne Hathaway, LL Cool J, Jane Fonda, Garry Marshall, Steven Spielberg, George Lucas and Yoko Ono. She wrote the book for the disco musical, Last Dance, which work-shopped on Broadway and she directed the critically-acclaimed hit comedy The Vic & Paul Show in L.A. and Chicago. She is currently writing the new musical, Somebody Feels the Water and is the L.A. correspondent for London’s Good Vibes radio. She recently won the New York Times Caption Contest.


 

Episode #7: Funny Women of JWT2018-04-19T10:31:39+00:00

Episode #6: Crossing Our Red Sea

OPENING THIS SATURDAY! SEE BELOW FOR TICKETS! Lisa and Maureen stop by rehearsal for our upcoming salon, Crossing Our Red Sea. They chat with actors AJ Meijer and Tiffany Mualem, as well as the show’s director Eve Brandstein, with an extra special musical preview. With the Jewish holiday of Passover approaching, Crossing Our Red Sea is a surprising show revealing life’s truths found in the Passover story. This is not a re-enactment of the exodus tale, but a re-examination of it using thought-provoking contemporary stories, poems, plays and songs that will make you laugh and cry. Opening March 10th!

CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS

Episode #6: Crossing Our Red Sea2018-04-26T12:27:35+00:00

Episode #5: A Passover Preview with Jim Ruxin

Lisa and Maureen are back with a very special preview of our upcoming March 4th film screening and talk with filmmaker Jim Ruxin. In this episode, Jim discusses how Arthur Szyk came to create one of the most well known haggadahs in the world, as well as detailing the Passover haggadah’s historical significance as a tool for storytelling, art display, and even war propaganda! Check out the info for March 4th’s event below:

Special Pre-Passover Film Event:
Hidden secrets and provocative pictures in Haggadot through the centuries and around the world.

Sunday, March 4 2pm – 4pm @ The Braid
CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS

Take a journey through the visual history of the diaspora as seen through 500 years of Haggadot, featuring the film “In Every Generation: Remaking The Szyk Haggadah,” with filmmaker Jim Ruxin. Prior to the film, Ruxin will present a short program about haggadot from around the world. To close the program he will display one of the new, fine art limited edition copies of the Szyk Haggadah for JWT’s guests to experience, along with a collection of diaspora haggadot.
$25 admission includes light refreshments.

Episode #5: A Passover Preview with Jim Ruxin2018-03-07T07:57:09+00:00

Episode #4: The Space Between (Abridged)

The Space Between explores humorous, heartbreaking and surprising stories that cut to the heart of what divides us and illuminate the yearnings and struggles, successes and failures of reaching out to find common ground. In this episode, we are bringing you a selection of pieces from the show.

To hear the show in its entirety, check out our very first episode!

This is a groundbreaking new show created by the first generation of NEXT @ The Braid, JWT’s Emerging Artists Fellowship. These 12 up-and-coming young artists have brought together stories, songs, poems and plays to create a unique theatrical experience that hope to bridge the gap in a time of intense divisions.

The pieces featured in this episode are:

MY FRIENDS TIED BUT I DID KNOT Written by Sigi Gradwohl Performed by Zoe Lillian
Check out Sigi’s original article on the Huffington Post!

LAKEWOOD Written by Rachelle Davidowitz Performed by Kyla Schoer and Zoe Lillian

A MARINE COMES HOME Adapted from an interview with Arturo Alsonso by Vicki Schairer and Lisa Cirincione Performed by Michael Hanson and Donnabella Mortel

NORTH STAR Music and Lyrics by Dan Omelio, Jesse Macht, and Emily Kitter Performed by Jesse Macht

INTERVENTION #2, HOW MAY I CONNECT YOU Written by Max Mondi Performed by Jesse Macht

2017 NEXT Arts Council Fellows: Amirose Eisenbach, Sigi Gradwohl, Abigail Marks, Chelsea London Lloyd, Andrew Fromer, Christian Alexander Prentice, Daphna Shull, Rachel Berney Needleman, Lisa Cirincione, Vicki Schairer, and Vanessa Espino. With Arts Council Producer: Abbe Meryl Feder and JWT Leadership: Artistic Director Ronda Spinak, Managing Director, Sharon Landau and Producing Director Susan Morgenstern

Performed by: Donnabella Mortel, Jesse Macht, Kyla Schoer, Michael Hanson, and Zoe Lillian.

Featuring stories by Rachelle Davidowitz, Adam Rotstein, Kaitlin Mamie, Sigi Gradwohl, Art Alonso, Daphna Shull, Julie Mayerson Brown, Max Mondi, Molly Murray, Vanessa Espino, Vicki Schairer and Abby Marks.

Featuring music by Jesse Macht, Dan Omelio and Emily Kitter.

Recorded in front of a live audience at The Braid in Santa Monica, CA on June 23, 2017.With generous support from the Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles, Erwin Rautenberg Foundation, and Dennis Schuman Charitable Fund.

NEXT is a program of JWT. Artistic Director: Ronda Spinak; Managing Director: Sharon Landau; Producing Director: Susan Morgenstern.

More information is available at https://www.jewishwomenstheatre.org/showsevents/performances/past-shows-2/the-space-between/

Episode #4: The Space Between (Abridged)2018-02-15T01:39:12+00:00

Episode #3: A Preview with Arlene Sarner

JOIN US SUNDAY! Lisa and Maureen are back with a very special preview of our upcoming event, Jewish Women in Hollywood: Gamechangers.  They sit down with Sunday’s panel moderator, film and television veteran Arlene Sarner, a writer and award-winning producer, who has written for every major movie studio, including Universal, Fox, Columbia, Paramount, Disney, Warner Brothers, Tri-Star, and Orion, as well as TV networks ABC, CBS, CBC, and VHI. Her film work includes Academy Award-nominated Peggy Sue Got Married and Blue Sky, starring Jessica Lange in her Academy Award-winning role. See below for tickets and details…

Jewish Women in Hollywood (Sunday Morning Performance and Panel Discussion)
Join us for a dramatic performance followed by a panel discussion with TV executive Olivia Cohen-Cutler, film producer Sarah Platt, legendary film and TV costume designer Debra McGuire, actress/writer Heidi Kozak Haddad, plus actress/inventor Hedy Lamarr. These are some of Hollywood’s most successful, hardest-working women; learn how they do it, how they got here and how they’re going to keep on making a difference. $20 admission includes a light brunch, panel discussion, performance and Q&A.
Sunday, Feb. 11th 10:00 am – 12:00 pm @ The Braid in Santa Monica
FOR TICKETS

Episode #3: A Preview with Arlene Sarner2018-02-08T09:24:32+00:00

Episode #2: An Interview with Ronda Spinak

Longtime board members Maureen Rubin and Lisa Rosenbaum sit down and chat with JWT’s Artistic Director and Co-Founder, Ronda Spinak. Find out how our great theatre got its start, what’s in store for the future and what Ronda is most looking forward to in our incredible 10th Season. You can also hear info about some upcoming events, such as:

Jewish Women in Hollywood (Sunday Morning Performance and Panel Discussion)
Join us for a dramatic performance followed by a panel discussion with TV executive Olivia Cohen-Cutler, film producer Sarah Platt, legendary film and TV costume designer Debra McGuire, actress/writer Heidi Kozak Haddad, plus actress/inventor Hedy Lamarr. These are some of Hollywood’s most successful, hardest-working women; learn how they do it, how they got here and how they’re going to keep on making a difference. $20 admission includes a light brunch, panel discussion, performance and Q&A.
Sunday, Feb. 11th 10:00 am – 12:00 pm @ The Braid in Santa Monica
FOR TICKETS

Episode #2: An Interview with Ronda Spinak2018-02-15T01:40:37+00:00

Episode #1: The Space Between

The Space Between explores humorous, heartbreaking and surprising stories that cut to the heart of what divides us and illuminate the yearnings and struggles, successes and failures of reaching out to find common ground.This is a groundbreaking new show created by the first generation of NEXT @ The Braid, JWT’s Young Professionals Arts Council. These 12 up-and-coming young artists have brought together stories, songs, poems and plays to create a unique theatrical experience that hope to bridge the gap in a time of intense divisions.

2017 NEXT Arts Council Fellows: Amirose Eisenbach, Sigi Gradwohl, Abigail Marks, Chelsea London Lloyd, Andrew Fromer, Christian Alexander Prentice, Daphna Shull, Rachel Berney Needleman, Lisa Cirincione, Vicki Schairer, and Vanessa Espino. With Arts Council Producer: Abbe Meryl Feder and JWT Leadership: Artistic Director Ronda Spinak, Managing Director, Sharon Landau and Producing Director Susan Morgenstern

Performed by: Donnabella Mortel, Jesse Macht, Kyla Schoer, Michael Hanson, and Zoe Lillian.

Featuring stories by Rachelle Davidowitz, Adam Rotstein, Kaitlin Mamie, Sigi Gradwohl, Art Alonso, Daphna Shull, Julie Mayerson Brown, Max Mondi, Molly Murray, Vanessa Espino, Vicki Schairer and Abby Marks.

Featuring music by Jesse Macht, Dan Omelio and Emily Kitter.

Recorded in front of a live audience at The Braid in Santa Monica, CA on June 23, 2017.With generous support from the Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles, Erwin Rautenberg Foundation, and Dennis Schuman Charitable Fund.

NEXT is a program of JWT. Artistic Director: Ronda Spinak; Managing Director: Sharon Landau; Producing Director: Susan Morgenstern.

More information is available at https://www.jewishwomenstheatre.org/showsevents/performances/past-shows-2/the-space-between/


 

Episode #1: The Space Between2018-02-05T10:46:23+00:00